apple pressWe need you! September means harvest time – come and help us! It’s wonderful to be out there picking fruit in a leafy local garden on a sunny Saturday morning, making the most of nature’s abundance. Contact us if you have a tree you can’t manage or if you’d like to help pick fruit. Or just come and say hello to us – we’ll be on our juicing stall at the Surbiton Festival on Saturday, 26th September.

Each year hundreds of fruit trees go unpicked either because people don’t notice  them, may not be physically able to harvest them or there are just too many fruits at one time. Abundance Kingston aims to harvest the seasonal glut of local fruit, such as apples, pears and plums and redistribute the surplus to the Kingston community (local nurseries, homeless shelters, individuals) on a non-profit basis*. Private owners will of course always get the first share, and some fruit will be left for the birds, bees and insects (!), with bruised and damaged fruit being juiced, so no fruit goes to waste.

20150917_110037

Abundance Kingston will continue through the seasonal cycle by providing planting, pruning and fruit preserving workshops in partnership with other local food groups. Whilst all fresh fruit will be given to the public for free, we hope to make the project self-sustaining by making and selling our own apple juice and other yummy delights!

We will:

– Provide fresh fruit to local people who otherwise would not have access to it
– Reduce food waste in the borough by harvesting fruit that would otherwise be left to rot
– Train people in how to preserve fruit through jam, chutney, and juice-making workshops
– Contribute to reducing Kingston’s carbon footprint by making use of local food and encouraging more local growing, cultivation and harvesting
– Educate people about the value of fruit trees in terms of human health, nutrition and ecology
– Map fruit trees and other sources of wild food across the borough, noting location, variety, yield and accessibility

Get Involved!

Can you help? We need willing pickers and we also need someone to coordinate volunteers – to field requests and arrange for people to go and pick the fruit, whether or not you go out yourself. It also takes a bit of time to contact local charities and arrange for the distribution of the apples. So at the moment, without a dedicated coordinator to manage the process, we’re still handing out some apples to local people – Surbiton Natural Health Centre was delighted to offer a spot for people to help themselves to local cooking apples – but for now most of our apples will make their way to an organic cider maker in North Surrey, and we’ll share the results in due course.

Get involved! Email Abundance Kingston if you’d like to know more.20150911_151146